The prestigious publisher, Oxford University Press, has recently released a handbook reviewing the role of mobile communications in society, a work that assembles many of the world’s leading scholars on this matter. Among this constellation of prominent scholars is CNSC co-director Mireia Fernández-Ardèvol, who authors the article titled “Older people go mobile.” In this article, Mireia provides an overview of the increasing literature on the inclusion of mobile communications in the lives of older adults, engages in critical discussions on the conventional approaches adopted thus far, and points to future steps for a fuller comprehension of the issues emerged on this phenomenon. Check the abstract below and visit the publication at the links section.
Abstract: This chapter examines the ways heterogeneous groups of older individuals appropriate mobile devices, the meanings of these uses, and the paramount role of the smartphone. Images, text messages, and voice messages have become key elements of (asynchronous) communication. In contexts where smartphones are pervasive, expectations and pressures come from relatives and peers, shaping mobile practices and associated learning processes. The chapter also analyzes the causes and consequences of non-use and limited use as the digital divide affects older people significantly. Finally, it discusses the need for non-patronizing empirical research going beyond health-centered perspectives, enabling a better understanding of the multiple dimensions of the mobile revolution and favoring an inclusive design of products, services, and policies.